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Duke students brainstorm answers to Ebola

Posted November 5, 2014

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— It took Michael Maranzano and his team days to come up with a potential answer to Ebola.

Maranzano, a Duke University Medical School student, and his team, along with four others, were finalists out of 22 teams of Duke students tasked with finding a solution to stop the virus’ spread.

His team’s idea – use Ebola survivors to treat patients.

"Ebola survivors may have some immunity because they have had Ebola in the past," he said. “Use Ebola survivors to do the low skill jobs in an Ebola treatment center. This will hopefully address the healthcare worker crisis there.”

Other teams brainstormed ways to prevent the virus’ spread, from tracking it through cell phones to using glow-in-the-dark paint to train healthcare workers.

The competition, sponsored by Duke’s Social Entrepreneurship Accelerator, consisted of students from different disciplines, including business, nursing and public policy.

Duke’s winner moves on to a bigger competition.

“Ultimately, some will be funded to fight the Ebola outbreak in west Africa,” said Kim Langsam, the accelerator’s program director.

As for Maranzano’s team – they didn’t win.

The winning team came up with an idea to create kits with supplies for health care workers to treat patients.

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  • backslaps82 Nov 6, 2014

    This was their "idea"...that's it? Underwhelming....really underwhelming

  • icdmbpppl Nov 6, 2014

    View quoted thread


    I agree with you. This is how elitist liberals think, and it is quite offensive.

  • JustOneGodLessThanU Nov 6, 2014

    The Republicans just tell us to stop all inbound travel to country... put up a wall...a giant wall...all the way around the U.S....into the oceans, even. it would keep others out too, right? what could possibly go wrong with that "cheap & easy" idea. ;-)

  • icdmbpppl Nov 6, 2014

    Is part of the plan to bring Ebola victims into this country to infect Americans, and try to cure them in order to treat other victims? How about a travel ban to and from West Africa? I don't think you're going to find any volunteers for a vaccine or to be guinea pigs. Gotta love liberals!

  • iopsyc Nov 6, 2014

    View quoted thread



    These are students, who lack the typical acumen you'd find in more experienced professionals, so I wouldn't get too worried about their exact wording.

    As for Ebola survivors doing low skill tasks, it makes sense because they wouldn't need medical training to carry out those tasks. There is already a healthcare worker shortage so most survivors wouldn't have medical training. You could recruit farmers, carpenters, laborers, really anyone who isn't a medical professional

  • sinenomine Nov 6, 2014

    Perhaps I am being overly sensitive here but the suggestion that Ebola survivors "be used in low skill jobs" is discordant to me.

    Firstly, in this country at least, most Ebola survivors are highly skilled medical professionals. They might volunteer to return to the arena to help fight Ebola but to "be used" is not an appropriate term.

    It seems to me that the idea of "being used" in this sense is based upon a stereotype of the typical Ebola survivor as being a poor black African with few if any job skills who might "be used" in the fashion suggested. As such the suggestion strikes me (again I may be being overly sensitive) as being unintentionally racially charged and engendered by stereotypical thinking both about Ebola and about the majority of the people in West Africa who are most prone to getting it.

  • jimcricket15 Nov 6, 2014

    "Ebola survivors may have some immunity because they have had Ebola in the past," he said. “Use Ebola survivors to do the low skill jobs in an Ebola treatment center. This will hopefully address the healthcare worker crisis there."

    Well on the surface it is a logical idea, however, I expect most people that survive just want to get away from anyone that has that horrible virus.